All posts filed under: Cost of Living

I need a private hospital and some Dunkin’ Donuts

For the past 4 months, I have been battling out my way through being pregnant at post. For one, satisfying my cravings proved to be very challenging as food that I grew up with are not readily available. The nearest Dunkin’ Donuts, for example, is in Shenzhen, Guangdong, China! There is no Krispy Kreme here either (sad, I know). On top of the first trimester blues, there is the anxiety of finding the right obstetrician and the right private hospital, wishing both will be as good as the previous ones I had back home. It is not really that simple to do that in Hong Kong. The fact of life here is to book a hospital, private or public, as soon as you learn that you are pregnant then pray for a confirmation that you have at least a bed on your due date. As early as May, most private hospitals have been fully booked for the rest of this year, one major reason for which is the influx of people from Mainland China who …

School for Little Miss Siu Baau

Little Miss Siu Baau turned 2 years old recently, Mr. Diplomat and I have been discussing how we are going to go about her education. In the British system, which is being followed in Hong Kong, she will have to go through nursery, reception, year 1 and year 2 here. Our preschooler will start a year from now, but with the mile-long waiting list in English schools here, starting to look for schools now just might be all too late. A friend gave us a pamphlet, Education 2011, tailored to guide expats in choosing schools here. If we are going for an international school, we are looking at annual fees of HKD43,000 in the case of Norwegian International School to HKD189,100 in the case of Hong Kong International School. Some international schools also require debentures of HKD50,000 to 1,000,000 on top of the annual fees. Another option presented in the pamphlet is to go for schools under the English Schools Foundation (ESF schools), which applies the British system as adapted to Hong Kong. The annual fees …

Hong Kong Rents Third Most Expensive in World from The Wall Street Journal

More expensive than London? Here are the five most expensive locations to rent a standard two-bedroom apartment, as of September, according to ECA: Tokyo Average monthly rent: US$4,352 Year-over-year change: 2% Moscow Average monthly rent: US$3,500 Year-over-year change: 17% Hong Kong Average monthly rent: US$2,830 Year-over-year change: 22% London Average monthly rent: US$2,824 Year-over-year change: 4% Singapore Average monthly rent: US$2,810 Year-over-year change: 15% From blogs.wsj.com Live it. Love it. Hong Kong.

Food under HKD25

For backpackers bound for or already in Hong Kong for the holidays, here is a list of where you can find meals within HKD25: 1. Cafe de Coral offers a taste of Hong Kong with a branch at every corner. Do not leave Hong Kong without eating at this fast food joint. 2. Fairwood is another fast food chain spread across Hong Kong. It has a similar menu as Cafe de Coral. 3. Pret A Manger offers healthy sandwiches and wraps if you are not into food additives. Two of its branches are conveniently located at Central Station and Admiralty Station. 4. McDonald’s has Amazing Value Meals for less than HKD15. 5. Ikea Bistro at Causeway Bay offers Swedish meatballs for HKD9 and a hotdog sandwich with a refillable drink for only HKD10! Of course, there will always be 7-Eleven and Circle K for their instant meals, hotdog sandwiches, chha siu baaus, garlic noodles and cervelats. If you are travelling on a really tight budget, bring your own water as drinks usually cost HKD10 to …

Bespoke: La Elite Fashion

Unknown to many, Hong Kong is also all about bespoke suits and not just the food. Its British heritage left behind an Asian version of Savile Row in Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui. Where Hong Kong magazine recommended nine established bespoke tailors. Some of these skilled tailors can finish a suit in 24 hours upon request for those who are just in transit. Some can suit you up in the same fabric used by Ermenegildo Zegna for a price, and some can even have your order shipped to wherever you are in the world. David Fashion La Elite Fashion Lapel Gents & Ladies Tailor L&K Custom Tailor Nita Fashion Punjab House Raja Fashion Sam’s Tailor Shaniel Custom Tailor From Where Hong Kong Mr. Diplomat has long been a connoisseur of bespoke suits, dress shirts and shoes, and has been loyal to his tailor, Valerio. A consummate gentleman has to be suited well, and so, our journey down this path begins anew as we try on the tailors of Hong Kong. Our first stop…La Elite Fashion. …